In order to graduate from Minnesota Secondary Schools, students graduating in classes 2010 and beyond must pass minimum requirements of Minnesota Comprehensive Assessment tests. The following tests are required for graduation:
9th grade - Writing
10th grade - Reading
11th grade - Math
These tests are given out in April of every school year. If your student does not meet requirements of any of these tests, they will be required to retake the GRAD portion of the tests. A student MUST meet requirements on the Writing and Reading tests in order to earn a High School Diploma. If a student does not meet requirements of their Math test, then they must be enrolled in a remediation course and retake the test until they meet requirements; if a student does not meet requirements after two retakes they are then eligible for graduation.
If a student does not meet requirements in either the Reading or Math tests they will be enrolled in a 1st period remediation class at SAVHS.
Students also are required to take a MCA-Science test while they are enrolled in Biology; this is not required for graduation.
The PSAT/NMSQT (National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) measures the verbal, math, and writing skills that students have developed over the years. Typically, students take this test during the fall of their sophomore and junior years. Juniors are the only ones eligible to qualify for the National Merit Scholarship program. The highest possible score is 240. Students/parents/guardians may obtain additional information at http://www.collegeboard.com/student/testing/psat/about.html?print=true.
The ACT is the college admission test that is taken by a majority of the students in the Midwest. Students planning to attend a 4-year school should plan on taking this exam. Typically, students take the ACT in the spring of their junior year. Sometimes students retake it in the fall of their senior year to try to improve their spring scores. According to ACT, student scores are highest during the April test date. Most colleges will accept either the ACT or SAT. The test is administered five times a year. It is best to register at least four weeks before the test date. New in 2005, was the optional ACT Writing section at the end of the exam. Students can opt to take or not take this section. However, many colleges/universities are requiring this section of the test. Please check with you prospective colleges before you decide not to complete the essay section. The highest possible composite score for this exam is 36. If you need additional information check-out: http://www.act.org/.
The SAT I is another college admission test and it is comprised of ten sections. (Three critical reading sections, three math sections, three writing, and one experimental section which is masked to look like a regular section) New to the SAT I is the addition of paragraph length critical reading passages, an essay, and more challenging math. There will be no more analogies or quantitative comparisons. This test is administered six times a year and you should register at least six weeks before the test date. This test is more popular among students residing on the east/west coasts of the United States. Students planning to attend a four year college/university should plan on taking either the SAT or ACT. New as of 2005, is the new scoring system for the SAT. The highest possible combined score is 2400. (No longer 1600) Additional information is available at http://www.collegeboard.com/.
SAT II Subject Tests
SAT II subject tests are individual subject tests such as: United States History, writing, calculus, chemistry, etc. Students should check with the college they are considering attending to see if they would need to take a subject test. Many of your highly selective east/west schools require the SAT II subject tests. You can go to http://www.collegeboard.com/ for more information.